Monday, June 30, 2008

I now officially live in a household, where place mats on the kitchen table are a way of life. For years I have dared to eat on a "naked" table, putting crumbs, wine, water, and anything else you can think of directly on the table. I used to go to other people's houses, see their stuck up little place mat existence and laugh at them. I would hear requests like: "Be sure you stay on the place mat", and "Would you mind cleaning the place mat when you're done", or my favorite, "Can you put the place mats out so we eat?". Even my late grandmother was a big supporter of the place mats in her household. She had these giant orange place mats, that were seemingly stuck to the kitchen table. I remember trying to take them off the table one time, and they made this Velcro-removing type noise, and my grandmother asked me what the hell I thought I was doing. I smoothed that place mat right down, and never again did I dare dislodge the damn place mats.

But its a whole new world now. In preparation for my sister-in-law coming to stay with us for 2 weeks, my lady decided to show off and went out and bought the place mats you see in the picture above. Before she gently laid them down, she took a dishrag, and wiped the kitchen table down like a woman on a mission. Yes there were crumbs on the table, but that was only because I had just eaten some Ritz crackers, and I had yet to clean them. Still, she made comments that the presence of crumbs on the table was even more justification for these place mats. Even now, as I type this entry from my kitchen table, my laptop is laying on top of our beloved place mats.

When I showed my lady the place mat picture I planned to use in my blog this morning, she tried to tell me NOT to use it because they looked wrinkled and I just started laughing. So if any of you people are lucky enough to make it into our place mat filled household, please say something nice about them, or touch them, or smooth them out, or something.

Got To Be There (a capella) - Jackson 5

Saturday, June 28, 2008

I got my meaty little hands on the a cappella version of Michael Jackson's "Never Can Say Goodbye" and I do believe I have listened to it about 5 times in a row. One time without headphones, and 4 times with, and I can comfortably say that there haven't been too many child prodigies with voices better than Michael. There are no missed notes, no voice crackings, no falsetto to hide his vocal shortcomings, its just a young kid belting out each note with perfection. I double dog dare you to find a singer under 21 right now, who could touch this performance I am getting ready to link at the bottom of this entry. And if you do find a performance better than this, then put it in the comment section below...I won't post it, because it will mean I was wrong, but at least you'll know in your heart that you were right.

Never Can Say Goodbye (a cappella) - Michael Jackson

Friday, June 27, 2008

I am writing to report a man law violation. Men, I don't care what is going on, you can never, ever carry a bag like guy in the picture below. It unacceptable, non-constitutional and un-American. I won't say its ghey, because then I'd be a homophobe, and I think my history shows I'm anything but.

The NBA draft party went a lot better than I thought it would go last night. I was nervous right up until the moment I stepped in the press room, and then the hoops addict in me kicked into high gear. There were flat screens all over the place with all kinds of pre draft analysis. There were some of my favorite local and national sportswriters and journalists, talking about who was going to get drafted where, and who the Wizards were going to pick. And of course most importantly, there was an impressive spread of food, and all the ice cream I could handle. So you see, there was no room for nervousness. Either I had to eat and stuff my face, or watch the flatscreens.

It took exactly an hour and a half, to get someone to talk to me, which is pretty impressive. Some guy left out to make a phone call, and when he came back in the room, he asked me who had been drafted, and I filled him in with the details, and then he asked me other basketball related questions, and I dazzled him with my knowledge..I also was wondering why HE didn't know this, since he had to have done his homework prior to the event. I also met some other people that 90% of you wouldn't know, so I wont even bother name dropping. The reality is that most of what I took in last night, is for basketball junkies, and based on the millions of you who comment on my basketball article, I don't know that you all would be interested. But the point is, I got thru the event, I didn't make friends, but I wasn't hermit man either, so that's a minor victory. The next time I am in the room with this people, I will be a bit more confident. Baby steps. Now if this audio that I got during the press conference doesn't come out clear, I am going to cry.

If you're scoring at home, or if you're alone, I have been propositioned for lunch at work, asked to give a massage, and then yesterday before my co-worker left, she asked me if I went home every night and told my girlfriend how crazy she was...It was at that point I looked at the camera and smiled. If she only knew how I will be trashing her ass in this blog like nobody's business. Although I am curious if anyone I've ever worked with has taken shots at me in written blog format. I would love to roll up on something like that, and link it here in this blog..

And now, because I had a dream about it, here is one of my favorite videos from the 90s..notice how Lalah Hathaway does one dance the ENTIRE video.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Work at 12:30pm

co-worker: are you ok?
me: i'm golden, and you?
co-worker: i could use a massage
**15 seconds of me giving her the Jim Halpert face**

co-worker: don't you want to give me massage?
me: no
co-worker: it won't be that bad
me: i think it would be
*nervous laughter all around**

seriously man, i need to invest in a camera, and attach it to my neck like those smokers do when they've overdone the whole cigarette thing. then i could have excellent video to back up these stories.
There was quite a lively discussion going on yesterday in the barbershop. The barbershop's version of an intern is named Lonnie, and it is his job to sweep up the hair and run errands for the barbers when they cannot get away. Each of the 10 barbers tips him about 2 or 3 dollars per errand in addition to whatever small salary he gets for doing other things around the shop. Lonnie is about 16 years old, and I have been seeing him in the shop for a few years, and he is a damn good kid. Sure he has a smart mouth at times, but its never disrespectful if that makes sense.

Well yesterday, Lonnie was took a two hour break, instead of the required hour he is allotted. Before he came back from his break, some of the barbers were irate that he was taking so long, because they knew he was with his girlfriend. One of the loudest barbers named Tony, was saying that if this were any other job, he would certainly be fired for such blatant disrespect(surely he hasn't met the people in charge of my intern). Tony went on to say that kids these days need to know right from wrong, and if its not nipped in the bud early, it can escalate. Some of the other barbers felt like he should get the benefit of the doubt, because this was his first offense, and clearly this girl had his nose open. Still, Tony and the barbers on his side, said the first time is one time too many..girl or no girl.

So about 15 minutes into this heated argument, Lonnie and his girl walk in the shop. Because he had been gone so long, there about 4 errands that the barbers needed him to run, and they all got smart with him in the process saying that he needed to be working not hugged with his lady. Of course Lonnie's lady couldn't say a damn thing, because she was grossly outnumbered so she remained quiet, until Lonnie got his errand instructions and then they both left out 5 minutes later. The argument continued right after they left, and both sides continued to make their point. Meanwhile, my hair STILL hadn't been cut.

15 minutes later, Lonnie strolled back in the shop with vengeance, and he started screaming(he must be mid-puberty, so imagine Michael Jackson trying to yell at someone) at the other barbers. He passionately explained that this was the only time he had with his girl, and he didn't appreciate being "disrespected". Some barbers were like, that's unacceptable seeing how we are paying you to cater to us. Other barbers were like you can spend an extended time with your girl, but you have to tell someone you're going to be gone for a long time, so we know to schedule our errands around your absence. Well all this parental advice/scolding was too much for little Lonnie, and he started crying. He wasn't all out crying, but little tears were coming down his face, and I felt bad for Lonnie...kinda.

I imagine my old intern being like Lonnie five years ago, which means I have no problem giving tough love early. But there is a way to teach a lesson without being overly hard..especially since he is a good kid. I'd have told him that he was dead wrong, and if he did it again, he'd be fired, without being paid for that day. I also would not have paid him at all for yesterday, in an effort to teach him a lesson. But when he came in tomorrow, I would treat him like nothing happened. I think that's fair. By the time I left the shop, the barbers had gone on to other conversations, and Lonnie had stopped crying, but I could see the wheels in his little head still turning. I suspect that this is Lonnie's first girlfriend, and just based on looking at her, she probably has his nose WIDE open, and he can't stand to leave her presence. I've been there before at his age, so I totally understand. But he can't lose sight of his priorities either..I wonder how my son will be at that age..

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Tomorrow will be one of the biggest days I ever had in my short "journalism" career, and I have been nervous about it all week. The Washington Wizards are throwing a NBA draft party, for the members of the media who have covered the team. And since I have been covering the Wizards on and off for this site, I was fortunate enough to get an invitation.

Now, there will be some members of the media there, who will have absolutely no pressure on them at all. They are veterans, they know all the Wizards brass, and this will truly be a party for them. Then you have people like me. I will be out there on my own, forced to network and make small talk with people who I may be competing and working against in the coming months. I usually don't care about being liked and well-received, but when it comes to something like this, it is absoultely vital that I get my name and the site I am affiliated with out there. I will be that new kid in the cafeteria who is searching for a clique to sit with, and that terrifies me to some degree. On one hand, this is the chance I have always wanted, and that excites me a whole lot. But on the other hand, I don't want any of my Rashad tendencies to overtake me, and mess things up, because I am feeling nervous or awkward. For the most part I have complete confidence in my ability to rise to the occasion and give 150%, but still, I have a certain degree of nervousness that gets stronger as the Thursday, 7:30pm party gets closer. I'm hoping that this is all for nothing, and when I write about what happened on Friday, I will feel stupid for even feeling like this.

Thank you for "listening" to my stream of consciousness.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Candace F. Parker

read my article dammit
I said I wasn't going to write about this, but I simply cannot help myself. In this new position I have taken, I have to share an office with an older woman. She was out all last week, but she is back with vengeance starting yesterday. Apparently she just had some type of surgery, so she's moving slow and complaining about every damn thing and its driving me crazy already. She talks to herself, burps loudly, warns me of other bodily functions that MAY happen, and her attitude is extremely negative and bleak. I have also learned that she lives with her blind mother who has Alzheimer's, and things have been hard for her since the surgery. I go back in forth between feeling insensitive to her plight, and just straight up being annoyed. It is just depressing man, for a quick second, I longed for my intern..I don't know, let me give this some thought. Even as I am typing this, she is reading something that's going on in the news, and I am ignoring her, yet she keeps right on talking. Are the working Gods punishing me for whipping ass on the metro yesterday? Am I being tested in some way? I need answers...and headphones.

I am sick of this Michele and Barack fist bump business. People in bars fist bump, people fist bump at their jobs, and lord knows athletes of both sexes fist bump all the time. I fist bump my lady all the time after sex, and that doesn't get a story on CNN or a seat on The View. It amazes me sometimes what the media chooses to focus on at any given time. If they want to do a service to this country, they should dig up a picture of her in a bathing suit or something. Now THAT is American.

I think I'm cranky today. I stayed up late with my brother, talking about life, hip-hop, and schools system, while sipping on wine. I should have saved that for the weekend...

Monday, June 23, 2008

So, as I am going up the escalator in the train station, this man starts running towards me. Now granted, the escalator was only going up, and considering there was a people comng up, clearly this man wasn't paying attention. But he kept running towards me. To the right of me was a woman with a lot of bags, so I knew he wasn't going to squeeze past her, so I was bracing myself for confrontation. This man didnt say excuse me, he didn't attempt to sidestep me, he was just focused on getting on the wrong escalator and catching the train that was about to pull off. Now I suppose I should have gotten out of his way, and let him by, where is the fun in that? So as he kept running towards me without slowing down, I took my forearm, and planted it right in his chest, and knocked his ass down. He popped right up, got in my face, and was like, "What the f**k is your problem, i'm trying to catch the train?", and he pushed me a bit, which I allowed since I had knocked his ass down. I yelled at him, "You're going the wrong f**king way dumbass, and you need to slow your ass down". He tells me to go f**k myself, then he ran to find the CORRECT escalator, and he missed his train. Serves him right.

Now, I am dead wrong for knocking him down. I think I am also wrong for not hitting him again when he pushed me. But I don't care..I can't tell you how good it felt to have a justifiable reason to knock someone flat on their ass. That is how immature I am.

My brother is in town from Atlanta once again, to interview for jobs and to find housing for his wife and child. He just got in about 15 minutes ago, and the first thing he did was hand me a booklet of picture my mother made for me two weeks after my son was born. I thought I had lost all these pictures in the fire, but apparently my brother had this booklet. The above picture was taken two weeks after my son was born. I was 22 years old, and scared out of my mine.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

For all my angst and complaining about going to yesterday's wedding, I can readily admit that I had a good time and it was beautiful. It was in a church way out in Olney, Maryland, and I just remember feeling real peaceful as soon as I stepped in there. Sure I was cracking jokes with my lady about the runner (aka the white carpet that led up to the altar), that kept getting wrinkled by people who were oblivious to it, and the creepy Christian rock music that was blaring thru the speakers. But other than that, I kept focused on the wedding. I think the part that struck me was when the pastor spoke on the various definitions of love. Nothing he mentioned was physical, but it was all about sacrifice, caring, remaining fair and calm and forgiveness. I didn't cry at all, but it forced me to check myself in a few areas, and based on our talk on the way home, but lady felt exactly the same. I wasn't quite moved to attend church on a regular basis(Sabin, I'm going to write that article), but I can say that I am thinking about getting back into the state of mind.

The most memorable moment of the wedding was when the groom got choked up. He was repeating the vows the pastor was reciting to him, and when he got to the "we are now one" portion, the groom just broke down. He literally had to take about 45 seconds before he could continue, and it was moving. The only time I have cried like that unexpectedly, is when I saw my son about 15 minutes after he was born. One minute I was excited and nervous, the next I was bawling. So I felt for the brother.

I must admit I have never attended a church with a white pastor, so this was a different experience. Based on the family members who attend this church, it looked to be a nice mix of both white and black families, but the pastor was white. He had this calm demeanor about him that I liked a lot. In fact he had one of those NPR voices that I wish I had..calm, smooth, very little emotion. Now who knows if I could sit through an entire sermon of a pastor with little voice inflection, but for this hour wedding I was definitely entranced.

The only downside of the wedding, was all the small talk afterwards. I had to meet like 10 members of the wedding party afterwards, and I only know the groom, and even then I only know him because of my lady. As long as I only had to shake hands, I was fine, but some people veered from the script and started asking me questions, and I would just wait for my lady to bail me out. And then there was this couple who was probably in their 70s, who chatted my girl and I to death. First they reeled us in with typical old people talk like where do you live, where did you go to college, what church do you go to(I hate that question..maybe its because i don't have one). But then the husband started trying to tell me about this business he had to help youngsters make money on the side. I kept trying to move the conversation to school, work and the wedding, but he was focused on getting me to pay attention to his damn business. Finally , I just asked for his card, hoping that would end things, but he kept talking. Luckily for me, my lady put her cape on, and saved me from this man's wrath. Those two old people were worse than Wedding Crashers..they came to the wedding to get their hustle was kind of cute, but not really.

We Are One -Frankie Beverly

Saturday, June 21, 2008

This stupid pregnancy pact story is exactly why I am so glad I had that sex talk with my son even though he is 10. I am not going to pass judgement on the parents of all those kids, because age 17 is about the age when kids think they know it all. But between being irresponsible with contraception and finding yourself with a baby at a young age is one thing. But for girls and boys who aren't married, have no job, and most likely live with their parents to intentionally sit around and say, "LET'S HAVE SOME BABIES...AND RAISE THEM TOGETHER..HOORAY"...that's just dumb. I realize I am far from the gold standard, but when I was 17, I was a freshman in college, and I know that I was WAY to immature to have a kid let alone tackle the responsibilities of regular sex. Even when i finally did become a father 4 years later, I was still immature in many ways, as was(and maybe still is) my son's mother. So I take that back, I am passing judgement on these kids' parents. This is just sad, and I hope all those kids that will be born to the 16,17 and 18 year women, don't turn into some angry hell raising kids, who shoot me in the ass, when I am 50 and trying to take golf lessons.

I am going to a wedding this afternoon, and I really wish I could bring the laptop. Weddings are just boring to me, and my lady said I don't have to go, but that's just not fair if I don't. I have made her sit through countless hours of NBA playoff basketball over the past few months, so what's an hour wedding really going to do to me right? Besides, I will be there making immature jokes about grown people, and if I am lucky, I will get to strike up a conversation with a crazy family member, who is looking to bail and get to the cash bar. I suppose I should be making mental notes about certain aspects of the wedding in preparation for mine, but that's easier said than done. I am convinced my wedding will be extremely small. I'll invite family and close friends, and then everyone else can come to the reception to dance, drink, and give me gifts..preferably sports related. I digress...

I am quite sure I have posted this video before, but I am going to do it again. The whole song is great, and all the guitar players are legendary. But Prince's performance is both brilliant and arrogant. I should have posted this earlier, when it was his birthday. His solo starts at the 3:32 mark:

Friday, June 20, 2008

As I walked into work this morning, I saw a homeless woman about 2 blocks from my job. She had bags and crates surrounding her, and she had on way too many clothes given how warm it is outside. Her hair was wrapped and in a scarf and she had glasses on, but the thing that stuck out most was the mirror and the makeup. This woman had one of this mini-mirrors that all women seem to have, and she was applying it to her face, as any non-homeless woman would. She didn't care who saw her, or how long it took, she was just methodically putting on lipstick, blush, and I am sure if I had stuck around long enough, I would have seen her full repertoire of makeup toys. I started to break out the camera phone, and snap a photo, but that would have cheapened the moment. She wasn't asking for money or begging for help, she only wanted to make sure she looked beautiful this fine Friday morning, and she did. I found it awfully inspirational. And now back to my regular complaining..

My son's mother lost her cell phone for the fifth time this year. I don't understand how one person (except for my former intern) can be so damn negligent that they lose their cell that many times. In fact, her carrier needs to revoke her privileges. When she loses HER phone, she borrows my son's cellphone that I bought for him, which is prepaid. I put about 500 minutes on that phone in February, and that system was working just fine for both of us. He only talked to me on that phone, and our convos never exceed 5 minutes anyway(we're men of few words), so that 500 minutes went a long way. His mother borrowed the phone on Monday, and by the time I attempted to call him yesterday, the minutes were gone. Now I have to put money on the phone just to speak to my son, and the his mother will continue to use the phone on my dime. I may just have to get him a regular phone, but I have no guarantees that she won't run up my minutes. This is reason number 4080 that he needs to be with me.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

this is my favorite commercial right now..only because of the "ACE OF SPADES" which is uttered at the very end...

Yesterday my lady and I were much too tired/lazy to cook to we decided to order Chinese food. I usually get orange chicken, but last night I decided to venture out of my comfort zone and find something else to satisfy my voracious appetite. I decided to order shrimp with lobster sauce. I had a taste for seafood, and I wanted something creamy to go with it, so I thought this was the perfect combination. When my food arrived, I noticed no cream, lots of shrimp, and soup. Apparently in the Chinese food world, sauce equals soup, and I had no clue. This place also forgot to deliver an order of rice my lady requested, so she called to request the rice and to get clarification on this lobster sauce that had magically turned to soup. She informed my lady that this was indeed the correct order, and so I asked my lady to ask them why isn't it called soup, but we got no coherent answer. Then I asked if they could just re-deliver some orange chicken since because 1)it was cheaper than the magical soup/sauce I was stuck with and 2)they had to re-deliver the rice any damn way. They told me I couldn't do it, because I had already ordered the soupsauce. In other words, they were just too lazy..just as I had been when I started this damn journey for food. How's that for symmetry? So I drained all the soupsauce, mixed in rice, and ate shrimp/lobster/veggie combo that way, and it had my stomach hurting INSTANTLY. The lesson here? just come home and cook some damn food.

It would make me extremely happy, if you would say a prayer for my number one mancrush. He just came off a brilliant victory on Monday, and it turns out the whole time he had two leg fractures that will require surgery and extensive rest, which means he won't play until next year. /So this basically means I will be watching one less sport until next year. I'll be sending a giant, get-well card to each and every one of you, and when you get it, please show your love to Tiger.

If you are in the DC area, and you need something to do, come support my man Brandon's party. As per the usual, the probability of me actually attending is 50%.

Into the Groove - Madonna

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Even non-sports fans had to appreciate that Boston Celtics' victory last night. Grown men, who all season were giving the media b.s. answers about their emotions and feelings, were crying, yelling and finally letting it all out. Paul Pierce and Garnett were crying because of how long they had been labeled as players who would never win, and on this night, they did it. Doc Rivers was emotional as he thought about his father who had died during the season. Even Kobe, who is usually smug and condescending, looked like a lost little boy as he spoke after the game about the loss. It was just a beautiful worth staying up until 1:30am, and writing an article for.

The NBA draft is next week, and then basketball ends until late September. Sure there will be summer leagues and all that, but it isn't quite the same. I'll have to dive head first in my fantasy baseball leagues now.

This going to work later business isn't bad after all. I have time to eat breakfast before I leave home, get some sensual seduction, write, watch a full ESPN, and still be 5-10 minutes early for work. Great times. I am also not going to feel bad about writing unspectacular blogs, because based on what I've seen, that sure as hell doesn't stop other people. If I had a soundbyte of that diabolical Vincent Price laugh at the end of Thriller, I'd link it here.

I still haven't wrote about Tim Russert passing..its just sad man, and these aren't sad times for me. Instead, I will speculate about who should take his place. I think it should be the current NBC News White House Correspondent, David Gregory. He's young, he's has a bit of a rapport with important people already, and most importantly, he was under Russert's tutelage before he passed. Tom Brokaw would be my second choice, but he's like 239 years old(a year younger than McCain), and I doubt he could handle the daily grind.

If The Papes Come - A Tribe Called Quest

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

How you get sized up at a new job

Female coworker (FC): Hey Rashad, you want to go to lunch today?
Her: No thank you I brought my lunch
FC: Oh what did you bring?
Me: sandwich and an apple, nothing special
FC: can i sit in your office with you, while you eat?
Me: Nah
FC: are you telling me now?
Me: Yep
FC: You must be whipped or in a relationship
Me: Yes and Yes, but that's not why
FC: then why won't you have lunch with me?
Me: I like to read the paper and relax and lunch, plus i'm not trying to see you chew
FC: Ok, i'll leave you alone
Me: good deal

I'm not falling for the banana in the tailpipe.
My schedule, my writing and other aspects of my life are out of wack right now. My new work hours are from 9-530, so I'm not quite used to that yet. The train is so crowded by the time I leave, that I think my genitals and ass were grazed at least 15 times..and I got no tip. I don't know if I have fully recovered from my father's day, in terms of sleeping patterns and such. And other behind the scenes factors in my life are on my mind as well. That being said, I hope that when game 6 of the NBA Finals starts tonight, I'll be back to "normal" again, and I'll be ready to write. Until then, expect my blog to suck ass. That's my disclaimer.

Monday, June 16, 2008

I had the sex talk with my son by the way, and it went about how I expected. I talked, and he looked absolutely bewildered. He knew some things about sex already, which was impressive, but otherwise he was uninterested. I explained to him that this will be ongoing thing, he said he understood. He starts middle school in August, and lord knows what kids are doing now at that level. He needs to to speak. I hope he waits until he's 18..

I bought new underwear last week, which is not really blog worthy, except for the fact that there is no hole in the front. Most male underwear has a little peep hole for the johnson to breathe. These underwear suffocate the johnson, so when its time for a little urinal action, I have to go through great leaps and bounds, to free myself from captivity. And any extra movements at a man's urinal are highly suspect, so I can't buy anymore undies like this. how's that for tmi?

I can't stand first days on new jobs..the training, the new people, the introductions, the lost, overwhelmed look in my eyes..
I had an excellent father's day man, I hope everyone else did too. I spent quality time with my son and my dad, so nothing can really top that..except to have my brother and my nephew with me, but that'll come soon enough when they move here. I am incredibly tired, and on top of my fatigue, I start training for my new job in about an hour. I tried to come up with an excuse in my head, so I wouldn't have to show up. But I couldn't do it, so now I'm here, drinking this soy chai latte, hoping it wakes me up...

that's all for now

Saturday, June 14, 2008

My son is here. no blogging til monday

Friday, June 13, 2008

Here are a list of things that have happened today, Friday, June 13th:

1)There was a fire on the train, so I had to walk to work

2)The power was out in spots of downtown dc, so traffic lights didn't work, parking garages were closed, and the building where I work was completely in the dark for 2 hours.

3)I came back home, and there were two people painting my walls...and I wasn't even aware this was going to happen today. I walked and said, "What the fuck is this?" (sorry i'm not editing that). They told me that I should have received a letter about work being done today and next week. I got no such thing.

4) I was supposed to get paid today, but there was some type of mix up, and i have yet to get my money. I need my money, since this is father's day weekend.

I wasn't a believer in friday the 13th jinxes before, i am now. This day just feels weird. I don't really feel like blogging right now, just wanted to share my misfortunes with the world

Thursday, June 12, 2008

I have been at my current job for two and a half years, which means I have been a member of the water club for the same amount of time. The water club is an institution created by individuals who actually want to live beyond 50, and they demonstrate this by drinking spring water, and not the dreaded DC water. Each and every month we pay a fee, to drink wonderful Deer Park water, and I visit the water bottle at least 4 times a day. I also eat an apple once a day, so what does that mean? Rather than disrespect my apple by bathing it in tap water, I daily treat my apple to a spring water bath. I make sure to do it quick, so no one will catch and accuse me of wasting good water. Two and a half years I have been doing this, and I had yet to get caught..until this morning.

This morning, the day before my last day, one of my co-workers caught me rinsing my apple off in spring water, and they asked me what I was doing. I finished rinsing, turned around, and asked them what they said, which would give me time to come up with a good explanation. Finally, I just said that apple deserved only the finest of waters, and they didn't laugh at all, and I just walked out. The water I had used to rinse my apple was sprayed all over the carpet, and I felt a tad guilty. But damn if this apple I'm eating isn't clean as a whistle.

Here is my article on Game 3 of the Lakers/Celtics.

Show Me Love - Robin S.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Keep Coming Back - Richard Marx(featuring Luther Vandross on background vocals):

There is this woman here at work who is a member of the church my mother used to attend to before she moved to North Carolina. My mother dragged me to the 6am sunrise service on Easter Sunday last year, and this woman was singing in the choir and I recognized her from work..I think her job is to pick up and drop off mail. Apparently she recognized me too, because after church she came up to my mother and said "I know your son", and my mother was all happy, and we spent about 5-10 minutes sharing pleasantries. I shook the woman's hand, got her name, and then ignored both her and my mother the rest of the time. I wasn't purposely trying to be mean , but damn it was 7am on a Sunday, and I had just sat through a sermon. I was thinking about the bed, not meeting new folks.

Well since that magical day, I see that woman at work at least 3 or 4 times a month. I don't remember her name at all, which is embarrassing, because she knows mine. For that reason, I try to avoid her like the paparazzi, but she always corners me, and the conversations always go like this:

Her: Hey Rashad, how are you?
Me: Hey there buddy, i'm fine and yourself?
Her: I'm blessed, how is your mom?
Me: Oh she's fine I guess
**20 seconds of awkward silence**
Me: ok well let me run along now
Her: Ok tell you mom I said hi

Now when I do talk to my mom, I tell her that the weird lady from her old church says hello, and she scolds me. But the sad part is, not only does my mom know exactly who I am talking about, but she doesn't remember her name either. Anyway I saw this woman this morning, and she was about 50 feet ahead of me as I walked towards my building. I slowed my normally slow walk to a crawl, in hopes that she would go in the building and up the elevator, so I wouldn't have to chat with such luck. She was lingering in the lobby talking to a security guard, and she chatted me up. And the conversation went exactly like the one above, except she told me I looked nice, which was sweet, but it wasn't worth the overall headache.

My larger point is, why can't people like that either diversify their conversation or leave me the hell alone? I see you basically once a week and you ask me the same shit? No comments about the hot weather, sports, Obama or something? And on top of that, I don't ask her JACK about her personal life, so why can't she take the cue. I know this sounds mean, but the world is full of enough small talk obligations as it is, why must they keep adding up? I would be delighted if she just said, "Good morning Rashad", and then I could see her and say, "Hey You!" What's wrong with that? It is pleasant, its concise, and everyone wins. She gets to say hi, and I get to do the same and keep it moving.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Perhaps I should have waited until the night time to blog yesterday, because my day definitely took an unexpected turn for the better. First off, I was able to attend the Washington Wizards workout and that continues to be both a fun and nerve-wracking experience, that I would NOT trade for the world. Secondly, I had a great talk with intern. I basically told him that he should have BEEN fired, but for some reason someone other than myself felt sorry for him. I told that if he was responsible 90% of the time, he would get the benefit of the doubt when something came up that caused him to leave or miss work. But when he is constantly irresponsible or missing in action, he starts to gain the rep as a bum. He kept apologizing to me, and I told him to save it, and just do better. Of course 10 minutes later, my supervisor lit into his ass something terrible, so he left work scared and looking like this We shall see if that actually translates into any action.

And then in a bizarre twist of fate, I found out late in the day on Monday, that I am being transferred to another floor in my building. I had met with my boss to see what other options were there for me, and the wheels had quietly been in motion since then, and yesterday it finally happened for me. So the new position will provide more of a challenge, it will give me new things to learn, and it will free me (and unfortunately this blog) of my beloved intern. This also pushes me one step closer to my ultimate goal of having a job that allows me to work in isolation, away from the cruel world of co-workers, office parties, and work happy hours. I asked my coworkers to not throw me a party or give me anything, but if they must, I prefer cold hard cash as my parting gift.

Yesterday I am watching NBC Nightly News, and Brian Williams was interviewing the 234 year old John McCain. He asked McCain a specific question about the rising gas prices, and then he peppered in some comments that Obama made about McCain's role in these high gases prices. So of course McCain took the bait, and COMPLETELY ignored the high gas price question, and he criticized Obama, then started talking about how he voted in the past 4 years in relation to this issue. I wanted to throw a plate of my delicious macaroni salad at the screen. Obama and McCain need to relax on criticizing one another, and they definitely need to talk a little less about what they have done in the past. Times are a bit more urgent than they were even 6 months ago, so if they want my vote, and I suspect it is this way for other Americans, they need to start laying out definitive plans of actions to cure the nations ills. If they doesn't happen, both candidates will see a curious number of prospective voters just stay home rather than vote.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Lakers/Celtics, Game 2
I got less than 2 hours of sleep last night, which is bad considering I didn't even get in the bed until 2am. Then I had to wake up 6am this morning, to finish my article about last night's game. I am supposed to return to the Verizon center to watch the Washington Wizards pre-draft workouts, but then when I got to work, I realized that it is going to be tough to get away at lunchtime. It is going to be 100 degrees today, and I have to wear a long sleeve shirt and dress pants to work. Meanwhile, the women here have skimpy dresses on, that they try to pass off as professional. And then top it all off, my intern was gone for 3 hours on Friday at lunch time, and he never bothered to come back. This morning he's all in my face like everything is fine, when clearly it isn't. I'm going to tell his supervisor, in hopes that they finally get rid of his ass.

but yeah besides that i'm golden.

Notorious B.I.G. - Kick in the Door

Sunday, June 08, 2008

So last night, for the third time in the past year, I went to see Mr. Terence Blanchard. I went to see him at Blues Alley last August for my father's birthday, and then I saw him again at the Kennedy Center at the tribute to the music of Spike Lee's films. This time around I wanted to go see him, because my lady had never been to Blues Alley, so I thought well why not enhance her experience by taking her see one of the best.

So, we got there insanely early, in hopes of getting a seat right in front of the stage, and the host immediately disavowed me of that notion. He told me that all of the seats close to the stage were reserved for parties of 4 and up, and since my party was only 2 people, I had to sit towards the back. Just as a frame of reference, Blues Alley is not that big at all..its about the size of a gate at an airport, so sitting in the back really isn't that big of a deal. Still, I have been going to Blues Alley for almost 20 years, so surely I could negotiate my way into a better seat. The host wasn't budging though, so i stayed in the back. But I was watching how he seated each and every party that was smaller than four, so I could scream on his ass if necessary. No such luck though.

Once we sat down and got settled, a father and son sat down next to us. The father looked to be about my age, and his son was five(he told me so after the show). The father was dapper in his suit and and tie, and the little man also had a shirt and tie on with a vest to go with it. The kid was asking his dad a million and one questions like "Daddy, when does the show start?", "Do you see the instruments Daddy?", and the funniest, random question was, "Daddy is Kool and the Gang going to be here?". My lady and I were trying to not stare and laugh too much, but it was hilarious. Before the show, the father took his son by the bar, where Mr. Blanchard and his band were relaxing. The father got a cd signed, and then he introduced his son to Mr. Blanchard. It was one of those priceless moments.

Once the show started, the father put his son on his lap, and they watched the entire show like that. Sometimes the son looked to be sleep, other times he was moving and grooving on his dad's lap. I really wish I could have recorded that moment for them. I wasn't quite as young as he was when my father took me to my first jazz show, but I was just as wide eyed. It made me wish my son was there with me, because it something we could have appreciated too. After the show, I told the dad that he did a great deed by exposing his son to this kind of atmosphere. Then I went and shook the son's hand, and he called me sir(i am old), and then he told me his age. Before I walked away, I told him that once he got older, he would appreciate the good deed his father was doing for him. He had no idea what I was talking about, but he will one day..and then he'll pass it down to his kid. That's how these things are supposed to go.

Oh and the show was great.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Saturday observations:

-I ran into some Clinton supporters on the train and around my neighborhood, and judging by what I saw, gay people LOVE them some Hillary. I think they were coming from Hillary's concession speech today. I saw buttons, t-shirts, banners, etc. At one point, I looked at the gay couple next to me, and I asked them, "So how did things work out today?" And of course they went on talking about the speech and the atmosphere, and they just TOTALLY missed my sarcastic tone. So do they save all this Clinton paraphernalia until 2012, or do they just put it on eBay or something?

-Dragonflies are the WORST insects on the face of this earth. I don't know whether they sting or not, but I do know they fly around, buzz loud and quite honestly they scare me. Plus they can change directions and stop on a dime like Barry Sanders They are way worse than cicadas, because at least with them, I can swat and step on them.

- For the first time since last year's ordeal I purchased some tennis shoes. You have no idea how hard it is for me to find something I like. and my lady told me I should buy a few more pair, which will be utter agony. Speaking of shoes, I wish I could wear sandals. I saw so many men while I was out and about, with nice sandals and all that. Unfortunately my toenails look utterly horrible. I should take a picture of them, and scare everyone who reads this blog.

-If you want to piss off another couple, the best thing to do is buy flowers and then walk down the street. I bought my lady flowers, and on my way back home, I walked by at least 10 couples. Each of the women would look at my flowers longingly, and the man would look at me as if to say "Thanks a lot buddy".

That's all for today, its too hot to be writing

Glow - Kelis


Friday, June 06, 2008

Latest article

What I did yesterday
The saga involving me, my lady and our neighbor is finally over. My lady informed me that when she left out yesterday morning, our neighbor thanked her profusely for the fine bottle of wine we bestowed upon her. She mentioned that she has never gotten such a thoughtful gift, and she was extremely thankful. She also mentioned that we were invited over to her apartment one day in the future, to enjoy a fine bottle of wine. I am still bothered that it took a chance meeting in the hall for her to say thank you, but I won't be an ass about it. There's no way in hell that I am accepting an invite to drink wine in her apartment, when the sweet confines of my own apartment are right across the hall. I just wanted her to knock at the door and say thank you, but that won't happen. I shall let it go now..finally.

My son graduates from elementary school next Thursday, and his mother called me to say that he wants to wear a suit to graduation. Initially, I was annoyed because she called to tell me this in the middle of the game, but a few minutes later I was able to appreciate this moment. Instead of sending the money for a suit, or buying one up here, and then sending it down, I do believe I am going to drive down to Hampton, and take the youngster to a department store, so he can get fitted for a quality suit, shirt, tie, shoes, etc. Kids his age usually detest the whole suit idea, and the fact that he is so gung-ho about it all, is quite encouraging. I may even have to take a picture of the youngster, and post it up here.

And yeah I know the Lakers lost, so I was wrong. sue me.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Yesterday my intern's underarms smelled and reeked of grim death. Other people in the office noticed it first, and eventually so did I. I had to give some serious thought about how I address this subject with him. I didn't want to embarrass the kid and make him feel bad, but at the same time there was simply no way in the world that I could allow the stench to hang around. So finally I just stepped to him, and the exchange went like this:

Me: I don't want to offend you or anything, but you did you put on deodorant?
Him: Yeah I did, but it must have worn off
Me(suppressing laughter): Well man you need to handle that, because I can smell you
Him: You can?
Me (in my best Obama voice): Yes, I can
Him: oh man
Me (opening my desk): I have some mini -deodorant that I keep in my desk, you need to get your from the drugstore
Him: oh ok, can I use yours?
Me: Uh, no

So the intern went to lunch and went to the drugstore and he came back with not just a mini deodorant stick, but he also invested in some mouthwash. He showed me both of them like a proud child, and I blew him off, like a crotchety parent. Someone commented yesterday, that since I am his boss, and he is young, I should be teaching him life's lesson whenever I can. I don't mind doing that at all, but a 23 year old young man, should have some deodorant that lasts beyond 9:30am. I still don't understand how he has a lady. I'm even willing to invite he and his lady out for drinks, just so I can see them together. Now THAT would be a blog moment.

I can't go into detail right now, but earlier today, I took yet another step towards being a full-fledged sports journalist, and I can't begin to tell you how good it felt. I was nervous, but I handled myself with great aplomb, if I may say so myself. More details later.

Oh and the Lakers are going to win game one tonight.

Eric B and Rakim - I Aint No Joke

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

I think there are similarities between Clinton's refusal to concede last night, and the woman who refuses to acknowledge I gave her a bottle of wine on Sunday. First, both women have some thinking to do. Clinton has to balance what is best for her with what is best for the Democratic Party. My neighbor is just moving into her place, and she probably has yet to find that time to think about any type of return gift. I understand that. Two, technically, neither woman has to do anything. Clinton could decided not to concede, not to help out her party and she can keep exhaust all of her options in an effort to wrestle the apparent nomination away from Obama. And my neighbor could ultimately decide that she does NOT owe me any kind of thank you or acknowledgement, and she could go in and out of her apartment, see me from time to time, and not miss a beat at all. Finally, both Clinton and my neighbor will annoy the shit out of me if they don't do something fairly quickly. I'm tired of this Clinton/Obama race, and I'm tired of coming home everyday wondering whether or not my neighbor is going to give me a card, come by and say thanks or something. I'm sure one of you reading this right now, is saying, Rashad, will you let it go for God's sake. And my response is that I will...eventually.

By the way, I had weird feelings on the train this morning. The fact that a black man could very well be the president, hit me in a way it hadn't really hit me up until now. It was a weird sense of pride I had while on the train, and it made me wonder what those people who still really don't care for black people may be going through. If I thought the Clinton/Obama process was tiring and annoying, I am definitely going to get sick of the Obama/McCain b.s. too. I still think McCain is going to win this election, but hey, I thought Serena would win the French Open too, so go figure.

Up until now, I have refrained from writing a single word about this damn Celtics/Lakers series. Since the last playoff game was played last Friday, up until today, every sports (and some non-sports) media member has talked about it, and I am sick of it. I just want the games to start, so I can write about them. And once the games DO start, please go over to this site, since me and a host of other basketball lovers will be writing and analyzing this joyous time of the year called the NBA Finals.

Too Much - Al Green

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

I suppose I should have done this before now, but I need to take some time to research what it is these superdelegates are all about. I want to know what the qualifications are, how much service you have to put in, how many people you have to sleep with, and if that title can ever be revoked. I see random politicans appear on television with the title of superdelegate appearing under their name, and I'm like who knew Perhaps there is a database that lists all of them along with their contact information. Personally I think from one year prior to the presidential election, right up until that magical November date, all superdelegates should be required to wear capes during their public appearances. This will allow uninformed people like myself, to truly understand what is going on, and it will also allow these delegates of the super variety to feel like the heroes they claim to be. Its a win-win situation.

How early in the day is it acceptable to roll the sleeves up on a long sleeved shirt? On my way to the train this morning, I saw people who had gone head first into the high sleeve roll, and it was barely 7am. Its only 55-60 degrees outside, and the warm weather isn't expected to hit until later on today. What drives someone to disrespect their outfit so early in the morning? Me myself personally, I refrain from such behaviors until a)the weather is warm or b)I have eaten lunch and I am trying to come up with any method I can to stay awake. I know this probably feels like I stole it from Seinfeld, but I didn't. This really crossed my mind.

By the way, does anyone actually read the wonderful blogs I have linked over to the right? If not you should

Monday, June 02, 2008

As I stepped into work this morning, I noticed that my intern was stuck down in the lobby of the building. He had lost his ID for the second time in less than a week, and if the security guard had not brought it to his attention, he would have left his cellphone in the lobby too. The loss of his badge is going to cost him some money, so hopefully that will teach him to be more responsible. I almost felt bad for the kid, but not really. Oh and on Friday, he tried to ask out one of the other students in my offce on a date...via email. I believed he asked her if she would "chill" with him. This man needs a reality show.

My neighbor finally moved in permanently, and once I saw this I promptly placed the fine bottle of white wine back in front of her door. Within 20 minutes, the wine was picked up, and now I truly feel like a charitable person. Now, the next challenge is to see when and if she says thank you. Mind you, I don't give gifts to get things in return, but still, some form of thank you is in order.

If there weren't creepy people in the world, I would put a picture of my nephew in this blog today. The last time my nephew was in town, he acted like he was scared of me. This time around he was much more playful and talkative. I also learned of his fear of motorcycles and helmets. Every time we would walk or drive past a motorcycle, he would start whining. Even if he saw any type of helmet on tv, he would start whining too, despite me telling him to man up. My fears when I was a youngster were of the Incredible Hulk show, and this Michael Jackson poster, in which MJ's eyes seem to follow me all around the room. Anyway, I had a great time with brother, his wife and my nephew, and I can't wait until they move here permanently.